The DCEU’s upcoming movie, Captain Marvel… oh wait…
All jokes aside, let’s break down the recent Captain Marvel feature released by Marvel Studios.
Marvel’s recent installation into the MCU, ‘Captain Marvel’, released on March the 8th 2019 and directed by Anna Boden and Ryan Fleck, is an adventurous tale of an extraterrestrial being, Carol Danvers, caught in the middle of an intergalactic war. However, after crash landing on Earth, she begins to have recurring memories of a past life; a normal life as a US Air Force pilot. With help from ‘the’ influential figure in the MCU, Nick Fury, Carol Danvers tries to uncover her past life whilst dealing with the ever-growing danger of the war against the Skrulls.
It’s a fun and enjoyable buddy comedy that happens to be part of the larger MCU.
It’s no strange thing to point out that this movie, when compared to other installations throughout the Marvel Cinematic Universe, doesn’t quite live up to the standards set beforehand. That doesn’t necessarily mean that it’s a terrible movie, but it just means that it’s not quite as good as what was expected. There are moments within the movie that are enjoyable and entertaining, especially the chemistry between Brie Larson (playing Captain Marvel) and Samuel L. Jackson (playing Nick Fury); however, that whole notion is undermined by the overall structure and elements associated with the movie.
There are certain aspects that aren’t quite right, and just stand out as dumb movie decisions, especially one scenario involving Nick Fury and how he lost his eye. That won’t necessarily be addressed in this review but will be later down the line in a spoiler-filled review, (The movie has been out for a while – but some people may not have seen it yet). There are several problems that can be detected within the film, from the flow to the character arches, to the overall underlying plot concept.
There are several things that Captain Marvel does quite well, but they don’t all contribute to a great overall movie. For example, it has moments that make up for other subpar and dragged on moments. The whole idea of going back to the 1990s, and building up a nostalgic setting for both Fury and Danvers, is a concept that truly explores how far society and technology have truly developed over the last 20-30 years.
Additionally, the implementation of Samuel L. Jackson as a younger Nick Fury to coincide with Captain Marvel, and their journey across the film, is filled with hilarious and witty back and forth dialogue that uplifts this movie. In an otherwise drab movie, the chemistry between Larson and Jackson provides a backbone that allows the movie to walk, but not run. If they focused more on the idea of a buddy cop comedy between Larson and Jackson, the movie could not only be better paced but would have an identity that audiences could potentially connect with, especially on an emotional level with both characters.
Another thing that this movie has going is some of the action set pieces and visual vibe that’s associated within the scene. It’s pretty common now that MCU movies are built upon colour, and vibrancy, rather than dull textures like other superhero movies, and that principle is still clearly apparent in Captain Marvel. The CGI in this film is almost spotless, from the action to the de-ageing of Samuel L. Jackson to a younger Nick Fury, it’s all flawless – to the point that the de-ageing CGI used is pretty much unnoticeable.
What truly doesn’t work throughout the movie is that, although it directors try and venture out into the realm of trying to create a unique piece of motion cinema in the expanded universe that is the MCU, it doesn’t quite do it well. However, that doesn’t necessarily always come down to creative issues from the director; these issues can be established from executive and studio influences, subpar script-writing, and so forth. But, there are just certain aspects within the movie that don’t fit in with the overall census of what the movie is trying to accomplish.
Some aspects of the movie aren’t detailed enough for the audience to care about, including some character arches, and some aspects just fall flat. However, the aspect that truly impacts this movie to be considered sub-par to other Marvel instalments is its lack of identity, for not only the main character but the movie itself. Finding an identity and creating a flowing and vivid story around that allows the movie to be somewhat more fluent. This is where the directors, Anna Boden and Ryan Fleck, don’t quite meet the standards. Let’s get something clear, this isn’t to discredit Boden and Fleck from the time and effort they’ve put in this movie, it’s just that it doesn’t quite land well audiences.
Thor: Ragnarok had a techno-futuristic vibe to it, Captain America: The Winter Soldier had a spy thriller identity, and the latest film in Marvel’s collection, Avengers: Infinity War, brings the whole identity of the MCU together, whereas the identity of Captain Marvel is a lack thereof. Captain Marvel tries to outreach its main purpose, which is to provide a great, flowing movie. Instead of focusing on one aspect, the movie divides its story-telling into different elements in its attempts of creating a unique movie. Evidently, this type of story-telling disconnects the audience viewers from emotional and important aspects of the film, causing a level of destruction.
In one instance, it’s a buddy cop movie, but then transfers to the fish out of water trope, and then again and again, which leads to a subpar execution of all of them. If the movie focused on a single element and truly nailed it down, it could have been a great instalment in the MCU, especially if it built up more on the hilarious relationship of Brie Larson and Samuel L. Jackson.
Conclusively, Captain Marvel isn’t a completely terrible movie. Even with problems such as identity and tone shifts, it’s actually still quite enjoyable, from the action to the chemistry between Larson and Jackson. However, the movie seems to be just filler and a way of introducing a new character into the MCU for the upcoming Avengers: Endgame. With that being said, Captain Marvel isn’t completely hopeless, but instead provides moments of fun and entertainment. It achieves a good score of 6.5/10.
Is It Worth Watching: Yes/No